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Women’s Curling seal first ever GB Universiade Curling Gold 07/02/2011

Team GB’s Women’s Curling team secured the Gold medal on Saturday morning at the 25th Winter Universiade in Erzurum, Turkey. They beat Russia 7-6 in the eleventh end to seal a dramatic victory after a fine competition.

Team GB Curling World University Winter Games 2011Team GB’s Women’s Curling team secured the Gold medal on Saturday morning at the 25th Winter Universiade in Erzurum, Turkey. They beat Russia 7-6 in the eleventh end to seal a dramatic victory after a fine competition.

The girls had only lost one match throughout the tournament, their opener against the Czech Republic, and since then they had gone on an unbeaten run that has now stretched all the way to the final.

Following their semi final victory over Japan, the girls met Russia in the final on Saturday morning hoping to reproduce the result from their round robin match, where they had previously beaten Russia 7-2. However, the final was always going to be a very different game.

The Russians started strongly, gaining a point in each of the first two ends to take an early 2-0 lead. GB were unable to respond in the third, where neither side scored, but they made sure they got back into the game, and into the lead, with a three in the fourth. That was still not enough to deter the Russians though, and the sides went into the break level at 3-3.

Women's curlers - World University Winter Games 2011Team GB edged in front with a solid two in the sixth, but Russia responded immediately to keep the scores level at 5-5. Another blank in the eighth was followed by a single GB point in the ninth, giving the team a 6-5 lead going into the final end. Though the girls had a single point lead, Russia had the key advantage in the ninth with the hammer. They made the most of it, grabbing the single point needed to force an eleventh end.

It was a hugely tense moment in the Curling Arena, but Team GB crucially had the hammer. In another tight end, it came down to the final stone, but skip Anna Sloan was able to handle the pressure and deliver the crucial point needed to claim the victory. After the match, she was delighted with the win, especially as it fell on her birthday. She said:

‘It was the perfect birthday; I don’t really know what else to say to be honest! It was really good, it feels good. For us as a team, who haven’t been together that long, it’s been really good to come together and do so well in such a short space of time.’

The team claimed Team GB’s first medal of the 2011 Universiade, but they also made history by claiming the first ever Curling Gold Medal at a Winter Universiade. Sloan was understandably delighted with the achievement, hailing it as one of the team’s greatest. She said:

‘We won the World Juniors as a team two years ago and that was one of our best achievements, but for this result to go down in history is pretty amazing for us.’


Full Team GB Women’s Curling Squad

Women’s Team
Skip – Anna Sloan - Glasgow Caledonian
Vice Skip – Lauren Gray - Glasgow
2nd – Vicki Adams - West of Scotland
Lead – Sarah Macintyre - Strathclyde
Fifth – Claire Hamilton - Strathclyde
Nancy Murdoch - Head Coach
Brad Askew - Team Coach
Polly Dhar - Physiotherapist
 

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